Canning Fermented Pickles

Water bath canning fermented pickles for flavour and tradition - gluten-free, vegan, keto and delicious!

Do you want to enjoy the flavour of fermented pickles all winter long? This recipe involves a quick fermentation for flavour, then uses a boiling water bath canner to preserve the pickles in their brine. These shelf-stable pickles will last in your cupboard for a year or more!


  • 2 lbs pickling cucumbers
  • 1 liter (4 cups) of water
  • 2 tbsp white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup of non-iodized salt
  • 2 dill flowers or sprigs of dill weed
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tsp pickling spices (optional)
  • 2 tbsp grated horseradish root (see notes)


  1. Wash the cucumbers and trim off the blossom ends. Cut up the larger cucumbers as required.
  2. Pack cucumbers into a sanitized container for fermenting. (See notes for more details).
  3. If you are fermenting in several smaller jars, divide the spices between the containers. For example in a large mason jar I would add in 1-2 cloves of garlic, 1 sprig of dill and 1 tsp of spices.
  4. Combine water, vinegar and salt to make a brine.
  5. Pour the brine over the cucumbers.
  6. Allow to ferment somewhere cool and dark for 2-3 weeks. Check every 2-3 days, and skim off the foam/scum and top up the brine as needed. The pickles are finished when they have changed from bright green to a dull green and have a delicious fermented flavour.
  7. Remove the pickles from the brine. Then strain the brine into a small pot, discarding the dill, spices and garlic.
  8. Pack the pickles into hot canning jars, leaving 1/2 inch headspace.
  9. Bring the strained brine to a boil and pour over the pickles, leaving 1/2 inch headspace.
  10. Using snap lids, process the jars in a boiling water canner (10 minutes for 500 ml jars and 15 minutes for quart jars).


  • Pickles will become soft and mushy over time. While removing the blossom end helps, you can also add a source of tannins like a grape leaf, 1 tbsp of grated horseradish root, or a pinch of black tea.
  • If this is your first time fermenting, then I recommend reading some basic fermentation advice.
  • Using a fermenting crock is traditional for fermenting pickles; however, you can skip skimming the scum if you use fido jars instead.

Keywords: canning, fermented, storage, traditional, summer, fall, winter, water bath, vegan, gluten free, nut free, dairy free, paleo, keto